Yeah, so this should be a big surprise to nobody:

Consumer research firm MyType conducted the study, in which opinions of 20,000 people were analyzed between March and May. The firm’s conclusion was that iPad owners tend to be wealthy, sophisticated, highly educated and disproportionately interested in business and finance, while they scored terribly in the areas of altruism and kindness. In other words, “selfish elites.”

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The story is typical “Wired” pseudo-geek pablum, poorly written, poorly researched and poorly edited, but that’s become Wired’s standard editorial style. The actual data behind the story is interesting though, basically it shows that the iPad, unlike virtually all other Apple product releases, appeals to older business-oriented folks, and is less appealing to younger internet-savvy “tweenies” which has traditionally been Apple’s target market for their new toys. To put it another way, based on this analysis, if you asked the two famous “I’m a Mac” and “I’m a PC” characters from Apple’s commercials about the iPad, the “I’m a PC” dude would be much more likely to go “oooh, I want one!” than the “I’m a Mac” dude.

My reaction to the iPad is a very distinct “meh”. I’ve been messing around with various computer “pads” for years. I was an original Palm user and an original Apple Newton user. I still think the Newton was decades ahead of its time, and mine still works. The writing recognition on the Newton is simply phenomenal. I’ve owned a series of Palm devices and currently own a Droid and a Blackberry (“own” here somewhat blurring the lines between things I purchased myself, and things my company has purchased for me, but which I use daily).

My son has an iPod Touch and one of the new Droid Jr. phones. Plus I’ve owned a veritable menagerie of laptops.

I like the concept of the iPad, but I don’t think such a device will really catch the imagination of the general public until they have screens which don’t require battery-hogging fluorescent or LED backlights and provide vibrant color with a reflective surface much like the Kindle and other readers provide. That technology exists with the organic LEDs being produced in Japan, but right now large pad-sized screens are prohibitively expensive. But projections are that those costs will eventually be comparable to, or even less than, current LED screen technology.

I figure in three years we’ll start to see the decline of the PC as third generation “pad” devices start to make traditional desktop and laptop computers obsolete.